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I Forge Iron

Looking at some anvils today

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So up until now, I have gotten buy just fine with improvised anvils. Whether it is a old sledgehammer head mounted in a log that I used for primary "anvil", the 1/2 inch angle iron I mounted on the edge of my work bench for straightening, or the "mandrel" I used which is really a top maul. I have gotten by just fine. Especially since all the anvils I have been able to find in my area in NC go for more than $4 per pound, with some even being much higher ($6-8). Well I have found a guy on Craigslist that is selling various "anvils and anvi-like objects". He has some various pieces of rail and I beams like most other people. He does have some 16x6x1.5 steel plate that he is selling for $5 that I will be most likely picking up from him. But then he has two anvils that might be worth consideration. 

Both of the anvils have broken heels and are missing their hardie holes. One is labeled as a wright anvil and in it's current state weights approx 125 lbs he wants $175 for this anvil. The other anvil has no obvious marking on it but weight 110 lbs and he is asking $150. From the picture the wright anvil looks to have some sway and a few significant edge chips. The other anvil's face and edges looks to be in slightly better condition. Obviously I will be checking both anvils over in great detail in person before buying either and checking rebound. My question is (and yes I have read every other thread that I could find on here about broken heel anvils which advise to pay very little, ie less than $1 per pound if not a lot less) but considering the current market climate for anvils in my area, are these worth it considering that they lack a heel and hardie hole? And in consideration of their overall condition. 








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Hi, MZ. Welcome to the insanity of recent anvil prices wonderful world of lemming driven market forces in capitalism.

There are a couple of guys that buy up and then resell anvils and vises on CL, including one IFI member in Denver, NC, just west of Lake Norman. You will get no crazy sweetheart deals from them. The very best you can hope for is current market value, "fair" or not. Read up on TPAAAT on this site, and look for folks NOT interested in selling anvils, until you ask them, that is.

I have driven from Charlotte to the VA state line to buy a $250 200lb colonial anvil for a museum from someone who did not know what he had, and posted a cruddy lo-resolution picture on CL. The deals are still out there, just harder to find.

And you know, of course, that there is an active NC-ABANA sub-group just down the road from you that meets regularly at the Dixie Classic Fairgrounds? Where you could get expert guidance from local smiths, and maybe pick up some items at a tailgate sale. But who would want to do that? 

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Thank Jon. And yes, I am very aware of the anvils being sold out of Denver. I believe that I actually meet the gentleman (if I am thinking of the right guy) a few months ago at an estate sale where we watched a 198 lbs shop anvil sell for almost $1300... Hence why I have yet to buy an actual anvil. Like I said, up until know I have been using my improvised "anvils" and have been very happy. Just thinking that I might be able to get one of these at a decent deal since they are missing the heel. And there are plenty of ways to work around not having a hardie hole. 

As for the group at the fair ground, I have meet them a few times mostly during the Dixie classic as I am usually there at least 4 days of it providing incident command for the event and they always have the forged manned. They seem like a great group of people. And I hope to be able to go to more of their demos in the near future. But the way they have them schedule isn't necessarily the easiest with my work schedule. 

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Either of those will work if they have good rebound. At least you know you can work around for a hardy hole. And you can make a bolster plate for a pritchel hole. Have you checked out any machine/ fabrication shops for larger drops that would make for fine larger anvils? 

If the rebound were good and I were to pick between the two pictured I'd probably go for the first one. The sway can actually be useful. 


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Thanks for for invite Joe. That is actually a day that works with my work schedule as I don't have to be there till 1900 on the 1st. I will try to make it. 

As for the anvil situation, I rode over and took a look at them today. I ended up buying the Peter wright one that you suggested Daswulf. The rebound on it was much superior to the other one. And while the heel is cracked off and there is one decent chip on the edge, there is no delamination of the face. Still even rings pretty good. Plus I ended up getting for about $0.80 per lbs. So a pretty good score in my opinion. 

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